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Advance Decision Document 2016

Advance Decision Document 2016

In the UK this week, Jehovah’s Witnesses will be given a new “Advance Decision” document (ADD) that they will be requested to sign and date. This is to be signed in the presence of a witness. Subsequently, one is to make at least three copies of the signed document. One copy is to be given to the person witnessing their signature, another copy is for their doctor and they are to retain a copy for themselves. They may make additional copies and give to additional persons, if they so wish.

BEFORE SIGNING, all Jehovah’s Witnesses should read it VERY CAREFULLY and they would do well to obtain legal advice.

When reviewing the form, each Jehovah’s Witness should FULLY UNDERSTAND the following:

  • Point 3 of the form where it talks about Lasting Power of Attorney (or Enduring Power of Attorney in Ireland).
  • Point 4 gives you only one option about end-of-life matters. You do not have to initial ANY of them if you do not want to.
  • Points 6 & 7 asks you to sign allowing full access of your medical records to elders on the Hospital Liaison Committee AND the person who you name as Emergency Contact in point 9. You do not have to sign this portion of the form if you do not want to give access to anyone other than your doctor.
  • Point 8 requires you to sign in front of a witness stating that you are “of sound mind and free from duress, fraud, or undue influence.”

Before Signing the Advance Decision Document

Before signing this form, Jehovah’s Witnesses need to ask themselves if they are truly “free from duress” or “undue influence”. For you to determine if that statement is true for you – bearing in mind that you are a lover of truth – surely you would want to consider the following steps:

  1. Read the form carefully. Slowly. Do not quickly fill in your details and sign it.
  2. Make sure you understand all the terms referenced therein. Get a dictionary if you need one. Use Wikipedia or another encyclopedia.
  3.  If you are uncomfortable signing any part of the form, or are unsure of what you are signing, get legal advice.
  4. Read Management of Anaesthesia for Jehovah’s Witnesses published by The association of Anaesthetists of Great Britain and Ireland. It is a useful document for any person who would like to understand how Anaesthetists must deal with Jehovah’s Witnesses in Great Britain and Ireland.
  5. Allow up to 6 months to sign this form. Remember, you already have a form signed back in 2011 so you need not rush into signing this revised one. If you allow yourself time to sign this form, you can determine if others are putting you under duress to sign it. You’ll also determine if there is undue influence.
  6. The ideal witness to your signature should not be an elder. Rather, it would be better to have your solicitor/lawyer or trusted relative present when you sign. And have one of the aforementioned sign as your witness.


Jw.org provides guidelines, letters and literature to elders explaining the Advance Decision document. Such documentation is listed below. However, despite the fact that the Advance Decision is a “life-and-death” document, jw.org do not recommend seeking legal advice. Jehovah’s Witnesses would do well to consider scriptures such as Psalms 146:3, 4, Jeremiah 10:23 and Jeremiah 17:5 before placing full confidence in the masterminds of this document. After all, the Governing Body of Jehovah’s Witnesses have not always been right about everything. For one to put their complete trust in this body of men, and signing this Advance Decision document without legal advice, could be folly.

REMEMBER: This is an advance decision document. It’s YOUR decision, not anyone else’s. It is important that you remember that. Therefore, do not let anyone coerce you into signing this advance decision document if you are uncomfortable with signing any part of it.

Here are all the documents that you should review , consider carefully, and get legal advice before signing this Advanced Decision document:

  1. Management of Anaesthesia for Jehovah’s Witnesses
  2. Identity Card
    (For children of Jehovah’s Witness parents)
  3. DPA-E Bi Advance Decision to Refuse Specified Medical Treatment
    (New 2016 version)
  4. DPA-E Bi Advance Decision to Refuse Specified Medical Treatment
    (2011 version – useful for comparison purposes.)
  5. Re: Simplified Advance Decision Document
    (Letter to all Congregations dated April 1 2016)
  6. Re: Simplified Advance Decision Document
    (Redacted Circuit Overseer letter to Bodies of Elders dated April 4 2016)
  7. S-139-E Guidelines for Supporting Those with Medical Needs
    (These guidelines are provided to elders only)
  8. How Do I View Blood Fractions and Medical Procedures Involving My Own Blood?
    (November 2006 Our Kingdom Ministry insert)
  9. Are You Ready to Face a Faith-Challenging Medical Situation?
    (March 1991 Our Kingdom Ministry insert)
  10. Care Plan for Women in Labour Refusing a Blood Transfusion
    (This should be requested from the local HLC)
  11. S-55-E How Parents Can Protect Their Children From Misuse of Blood
    (This form is for parents and pregnant women)
  12. Healthy Mothers, Healthy Babies
    (November 2009 issue of Awake!)
  13. Could Your Child Make a Mature Decision?
    (December 2005 Our Kingdom Ministry)
  14. Write your own wishes
    (This is for unbaptized publishers – performed in line with December 2004 Our Kingdom Ministry, page 7)
  15. Supporting our brothers regarding the blood issue
    (Letters to all bodies of Elders, dated May 2, 2015)
  16. Hospital Liaison Committees
    (Letters to all congregations, dated January 3, 2006)
  17. Meeting Medical Needs in the foreign language field
    (Letters to all bodies of Elders, dates April 17, 2015)
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Jason Wynne is a husband to one wife, father to two children, and writes extensively on the activities of Jehovah's Witnesses having been baptized as a member in 1995.

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